Jeff Croft

I’m a product designer in Seattle, WA. I lead Design at a stealthy startup. I recently worked at Simply Measured, and previously co-founded Lendle.

Some of my past clients include Facebook, Microsoft, Yahoo!, and the University of Washington.

I’ve authored two books on web and interactive design and spoken at dozens of conferences around the world.

But seriously, who gives a shit?

Blog entry // 09.11.2008 // 8:43 PM // 136 Comments

Two thousand twenty two

Today, it was brought to my attention that HTML 5 Editor Ian Hickson, in an August 27 interview with TechRepublic outlined a timetable for the “new” spec, which began life back in 2003. Hixie suggests HTML 5 will reach the “Proposed Recommendation” stage sometime in 2022. Go ahead, read it again. It’s not a typo. Two thousand twenty two.

I immediately stopped reading. Didn’t even bother with the rest of the interview. Why? Because it just doesn’t matter. The whole concept of web standards, which I once strongly advocated for, has now become so incredibly ridiculous as to be not even worth the time and attention of serious web designers and developers.

As I pointed out on Twitter today (much to the dismay of certain standardistas, who have previously asked me to name names instead of referring to a “shadowy cabal”): it ultimately doesn’t matter if HTML 5 is available next month, next year, or fifty years from now. Those of us who do real work in this industry know that the only thing that really matters is what specs and technologies are supported by the browsers real people use.

I’ve got work to do, here. I don’t have time to sit around reading specs and interviews by spec editors detailing what is going to happen in 13 years. God knows where I’ll be in 13 years. Quite frankly, I’ll be pretty fucking disappointed in myself (and our entire industry) if I’m writing HTML in 13 years. Hell, if I’m still alive in 2022, I’ll think I haven’t been playing hard enough.

I care about right fucking now. My clients care about right fucking now. Our users care about right fucking now. The only people that really give a damn about two thousand twenty two are people who write timetables for a living.

I’m done with web standards. I’m done reading specs. I’m done caring whether a property is part of CSS 2.1 or CSS 3. I’m done caring whether -webkit-border-radius is a “standard” or not. I’m done caring whether or not a page validates against a given spec. Who fucking cares? I’m building websites for clients and users, not for Jeremy Keith. Aren’t you?

We’ve all learned a lot through this standards movement. We are now capable of identifying a good idea when we see it (like the namespacing of experimental CSS properties, for example). We are equally capable of knowing when something feels inelegant (like maintaining different code bases to achieve the same thing in multiple browsers). Our bullshit radar is strong these days. We don’t need a spec to tell us whether something is useful or not (XMLHttpRequest was incredibly useful, despite not being a “standard”).

I’m not saying the specs should go away. They absolute serve a purpose. I’m just saying that I personally am done paying much attention to them. Instead, I’m reading blogs like Surfin’ Safari and Mozilla Developer News to find out what the new shiny is in browsers, because these are the things I can actually take advantage of in serving my clients and users.

If and when HTML 5 becomes something that can help me serve my clients and the users of their websites, then I will absolutely learn all there is to know about it and incorporate it into my arsenal. Until then, I don’t see the point. There are people, like Ian Hickson and Jeremy Keith, who care about this stuff. Ian and Jeremy, and people like them, are smart cookies. If they want to look forward and try to imagine what we might be doing in 2022, that’s awesome. In the meantime, I’ve got real work to do.

So forgive me if I poke fun at the absurdity of proposing a timeline 13 years out in this industry. It’s not personal. It’s just, I mean, c’mon…that’s fucking ridiculous. It’s ridiculous to even think about what HTML will look like 13 years from now. It’s so unbelievably absurd that I can’t help but laugh. For the past several years I’ve been making jokes like, “HTML 5 will be awesome when it’s done in 2014.” Today, I found out my absurdist jokes weren’t even half as ridiculous as the reality of the situation. And that’s funny. Like, really funny. And if you get your panties in a knot because I am making light of the situation, then you and I just wouldn’t get along.

So while you count the days until HTML 5 is available to you, I’ll be doing real work, on real websites, which have real users, for real clients. I truly look forward to raising a glass to those of you whose hard work will make HTML 5 a reality…in two thousand twenty two.

Comments

  1. 001 // Jina Bolton // 09.11.2008 // 9:07 PM

    I wonder if CSS3 will be mainstream before then? ;) hehe.

    In 2022, I’ll be about 39 years old. I wonder if I’ll still be making websites then? :)

  2. 002 // Jeff Croft // 09.11.2008 // 9:14 PM

    I wonder if websites will even still exist then.

  3. 003 // Scott // 09.11.2008 // 9:18 PM

    I’m right there with you Jeff.

    Standards are important but for people building for the web “today”, that’s what matters - “today”, not what the web might be in 14 years.

    Although I care about what’s coming down the pipe for web standards, here’s plenty of stuff to focus on now, more than I think any one can really get a good handle on, nevermind dedicating time reading specs that will undoubtedly change in the future before they’re finalized. To me, I don’t see the real value in that.

    The future’s great and all, but “now” is what matters most.

  4. 004 // Josh Kendall // 09.11.2008 // 9:20 PM

    My clients care about right fucking now. Our users care about right fucking now.

    I think that sums it up nicely.

    I don’t think I’ve worked on a project in the last year where the client cared (or really knew) about standards. The client just wants something that works for their users.

  5. 005 // Corey Dutson // 09.11.2008 // 9:23 PM

    that’s fucking ridiculous” pretty much summarizes what I was thinking when I read 2022. In something as evolving as the Web, how can you propose ANYTHING more than, say, two years into the future. Even that sound’s a tad pipe-dreamish.

    2022: God knows what the Internet will look like at that point. Will we even have websites? or will the mass conversion of networked brains be underway by then?

    Excellent point.

  6. 006 // Andrew Duck // 09.11.2008 // 9:30 PM

    Hey Jeff,

    Absolutely loving the http://ishtml5readyyet.com/ website. Going to have to keep checking back on that one.

    I do agree that 2022 seems a little far fetched. In an industry that moves as fast as this we cannot be writing specs 19 years after we start, I would hate to see that the technology we are working with in 2022 accurately reflects specifications being discussed at the moment, I think if that were the case we are in a most unfortunate situation.

    Browsers will continue to develop and innovate, developers will continue to implement these features and as they grow in popularity other browsers will follow suit. At that point there is a need for standardisation, but if it is going to take 19 years then it probably isn’t worth starting.

  7. 007 // Jeff Croft // 09.11.2008 // 9:34 PM

    Andrew: For the record, the ishtmlreadyyet.com site was put together by J Cornelius from CoffeeCup Software. I thought it was brilliant, too. :)

    At that point there is a need for standardisation, but if it is going to take 19 years then it probably isn’t worth starting.

    Exactly.

  8. 008 // Dan Rubin // 09.11.2008 // 9:40 PM

    Yup, yup and yup. Though like I said over on Bryan’s identically titled post, I certainly don’t intend to be doing “web work” by that time. I’m very curious to see where the web actually is in 14 years, though I can’t imagine that HTML5 will even get that far; it’ll all be obsolete before 2022.

  9. 009 // Joshua Works // 09.11.2008 // 9:43 PM

    @Jeff (002) That was my first thought. I’ll be surprised if website-as-HTML is still the preferred method for moving around the tons of data we create, especially in the manner that could have been predicted in 2003 or even today. Hell, iPods will be over 20 years old by then and if everything’s not run as an iPhone App, then something went wrong.

  10. 010 // Darren Fauth // 09.11.2008 // 9:56 PM

    Bravo! Well said. I thought I was the only “real life” web developer that was holding-in this dirty little secret of abandoning the Web Standards march.

    Thanks for letting us know we’re not alone.

  11. 011 // Benny Daon // 09.11.2008 // 10:06 PM

    HTML5 timetable is a clear sign that HTML made it. It became the standard protocol at the presentation layer. A new HTML version is as needed as a new version of Ethernet, TCP/IP or HTTP.

    It’s time to move on.

  12. 012 // Jeff Croft // 09.11.2008 // 10:27 PM

    Benny-

    I’m not sure I understand. Are you saying that because Ian Hickson says HTML 5 won’t be “done” until 2022, it means that HTML has been a success? While I definitely think HTML has been a success, I can’t imagine why the timetable for the next version is evidence of it.

    Personally, I think the timetable for the next version of HTML says absolutely nothing about the markup language itself, but loads about the red tape imposed on getting a spec completed in the environment the powers that be have set up, here.

  13. 013 // liorean // 09.11.2008 // 11:33 PM

    Well, a finish date in 2022 would be ridiculous, if not for the fact the estimated “this is finished” date is Candidate Recommendation in 2012 according to that time table. He’s given an entire decade to writing and getting at least two full implementations through a more rigorous spec interoperability testsuite than we have ever seen in any standard related to the web.

    In other words: 2022 is not the dats set when browsers are to begin implementing HTML5 - no, 2022 is the estimated date when several browsers have proven that they have implemented EVERYTHING in HTML5 to the letter and correctly, without bugs.

  14. 014 // Eduardo Padoan // 09.12.2008 // 5:06 AM

    You shouldn’t have stoped reading, because Ian actually agrees with a lot of what you say:

    ”” Q: … Do you think that the adoption rate of HTML 5 will be higher than HTML 4?

    [blablabla]

    To be honest, though, I don’t think it matters. HTML5 has already been enough of a success in bringing browser vendors together and addressing the many problems in HTML4 (like the lack of parsing rules for invalid documents) that whatever happens next, it was worth it so far. ”“”

    The problem I see is expecting to see a standards body that ships a finnished spec one day and everybody adopts it. That was the mentality of HTML 4 and XHTML 1.1 - and was completely unrealistic. I see HTML5 as an effort to evolve the web in this 13 years, not an effort to write a spec that will be irrelkevant in 13 years.

  15. 015 // Simon Willison // 09.12.2008 // 5:35 AM

    I’m reading blogs like Surfin’ Safari and Mozilla Developer News to find out what the new shiny is in browsers

    Then you’re interested in HTML5, because that’s where the “new shiny” which browsers are implementing today is being defined. Forget about 2022; half the interesting stuff in HTML5 is already being implemented. The current HTML5 spec is where the browser vendors informally agree on how things like the canvas tag should actually work (nobody wants different browsers to have conflicting canvas implementations; that way lies madness).

    As Liorean pointed out above, the date you should be interested in is the Candidate Recommendation in 2012. The ten years after that are when browsers go through and implement every single line of the spec (which is reasonably, given CSS 2 was finalised in 1998 and there still aren’t two 100% complete implementations).

    I suggest reading the rest of the interview. HTML5 is a break from previous standards for a very good reason: they want to get it right, have a proper test suite, an unambiguous specification (CSS 2 etc are full of holes) and full support from the browser vendors.

  16. 016 // Jeff Croft // 09.12.2008 // 5:37 AM

    In other words: 2022 is not the dats set when browsers are to begin implementing HTML5 - no, 2022 is the estimated date when several browsers have proven that they have implemented EVERYTHING in HTML5 to the letter and correctly, without bugs.

    Yes, I know. And if you think that makes it less ridiculous, then you and I don’t share the same sense of humor. The point here is the absurdity of trying to look 13 years into the future in this industry. Frankly, looking four years into the future in this industry is pretty impossible.

    As I said in the article, if and when HTML 5 is ready to use, I’ll consider using it. If that’s 2012, great. If I’m still writing HTML in 2012, I’ll consider it. In the meantime, I’m going to laugh at the absurdity of creating a 19 year timetable for anything in our industry. Okay?

  17. 017 // Jeff Croft // 09.12.2008 // 5:40 AM

    Then you’re interested in HTML5, because that’s where the “new shiny” which browsers are implementing today is being defined. Forget about 2022; half the interesting stuff in HTML5 is already being implemented.

    I do understand this, Simon. I get it. But it doesn’t make it any less ridiculous to set a 19 year timetable in this industry. C’mon…that’s funny. Admit it! It’s funny! It’s okay to laugh at the absurdity, here. That’s all I’m doing. :)

    I suggest reading the rest of the interview. HTML5 is a break from previous standards for a very good reason: they want to get it right, have a proper test suite, an unambiguous specification (CSS 2 etc are full of holes) and full support from the browser vendors.

    I know that. I really do. And yes, I went back and read the rest of the interview, and it was quite good. Look, none of this is a slam on HTML 5 or anyone involved. I simply think it’s funny, that’s all. It’s the equivalent of John McCain coming out with an energy plan that says we’ll be rid of foreign oil in 96 years. That would make me laugh, too. Because, how in God’s name can anyone look 96 years into the future and pretend to know what will be going on at that time? It’s the same thing. It’s just…funny. C’mon, have a laugh about it!

  18. 018 // Joe Clark // 09.12.2008 // 5:43 AM

    You’ve been “done with [W]eb standards” as you describe them for what, two years now?

    Count yourself lucky you were not also dismissed as a so-called expert.

  19. 019 // Jeff Croft // 09.12.2008 // 5:45 AM

    I won! I guessed closest. I had a pool going to guess how long it would take before Joe Clark came along and left his typical, “isn’t this the same thing you said last time message?!” And I won! Good to see you, Joe! :)

  20. 020 // Eduardo Padoan // 09.12.2008 // 5:49 AM

    As an example of what Simon Willison said above, I have just readed on Planet Mozilla that they implemented HTML5 Drag and Drop. The idea mighty have come from them, by the way. What matters is that, when people from Mozilla/Opera/Webkit/Google have a idea for the web, they propose it for inclusion on HTML5, implement it, and other browsers can implement it under the “Its on HTML5” excuse - except if they dont agree, so it they can use the open forums to complain. Anyway, what matters is the forum, not the dates. The web is constantly evolving, so shiping a great spec that is unimplementable and will be irrelevent for 90% of the users just dont make sense. We have a Working Group to discuss the features we want in HTML, so browsers dont just implement a new feature that others have to catchup (XmlHttpRequest anyone?) - they propose it as a standard.

  21. 021 // Jamie Huskisson // 09.12.2008 // 5:51 AM

    Here here!

  22. 022 // Jeff Croft // 09.12.2008 // 5:53 AM

    What matters is that, when people from Mozilla/Opera/Webkit/Google have a idea for the web, they propose it for inclusion on HTML5, implement it…

    Isn’t that exactly what I said? I said that what matters is what is implemented in browsers. So, if bits of HTML 5 are implemented in browsers, then by all means, it matters!

    Glad we’re on the same page.

  23. 023 // Eduardo Padoan // 09.12.2008 // 6:16 AM

    Jeff Croft, indeed. :)

  24. 024 // Jeremy Keith // 09.12.2008 // 6:33 AM

    Jeff, I agree with you. What’s important isn’t when a spec is officially “done”, it’s when we can starting using the new shiny stuff. That’s why I was advising against paying any attention to the 2022 date: it’s completely irrelevant to developers like you and me.

    As Simon has pointed, there’s quite a bit of HTML5 already available today and by 2012 there will be a whole lot more. That’s what interests me (and from what you’re saying, that’s what interests you too). This isn’t like CSS3 where, even though some of it is supported in browsers today, it’s technically invalid to use it because the spec isn’t “done”. You can use HTML5 today and validate it against the HTML doctype (http://validator.nu/). (Listen to me: I sound like a flag-waver for HTML5, which is not the case at all …but I do know enough about the process to know that the 2022 date isn’t anything to get upset about.)

    So it sounds like we’re all in agreement that what matters to us isn’t any timetable from the WHAT-WG. They could list 2050 as their end date for all we care. What we care about is when we get stuff to play with and that will happen very soon (perhaps too soon for some stuff).

    Given all that, I don’t understand why you’re so upset with Hixie’s proposed timetable.

    By the way, I apologise if my Twitter post offended you but I hope you can see where I was coming from: you seemed to have latched on to the “2022” thing as a soundbite like “lipstick on a pig” instead of reading on to find out the dates that matter to us. In retrospect, my comment probably came across as way harsher than I intended. Mea culpa. I certainly didn’t intend to “attack” you though given the 140 character limit, I can see how it came across that way.

    Also, I wasn’t snubbing you on IM: I wasn’t on IM. I must have been still logged on at my work machine while I was at home.

    For the record, I don’t hate, dislike or have any other negative feelings towards you. I wish you’d believe me. We have far more in common than we have differences.

    Anyway, my point is that the 2022 date is not something to be bothered about. By then, we will probably all have been using HTML5 for years. By the time it reaches a status of “proposed recommendation”, HTML5 will have been to all intents and purposes “done” for many years.

    I think all of this may be a simple of misunderstanding of semantics. Browser vendors don’t have to wait for “proposed recommendation” status before implementing this stuff. Neither do developers. The “candidate recommendation” will effectively be the green light for browser vendors ‘though I anticipate most of them will be implementing everything from the “last call working draft” point onwards. And that’s next year.

  25. 025 // Michael Montgomery // 09.12.2008 // 7:02 AM

    Can we all please step back from the edge?

    To me, “web standards” has always included an aspiration that we all (continue) “learning better ways to build cool stuff.”

    Otherwise, all the thousands of pump & dump, old-school, rock-the-tables for killer websites so-called “web strategy” factories will continue to feel justified in producing their code vomit.

    Sorry, rant over.

  26. 026 // Guy Carberry // 09.12.2008 // 7:03 AM

    I’m still waiting for my hoverboard.

  27. 027 // Emily Lewis // 09.12.2008 // 7:04 AM

    I’m a bit torn on this discussion. On the one hand, I agree completely with you about the absurdity of the HTML5 spec timetable and “future-gazing” in general. Not to mention, that even if the specification were finalized tomorrow, it would make very little difference in the real world work that needs to be done now.

    Now for the other hand: From my perspective, standards are about more than specifications. Yes, to have valid code, it has to be validated against something. But web standards are also about structure and semantics, and separation of content from presentation and behavior.

    And these two points of standards offer some “organic” benefits: easier maintenance, reduced bandwidth, increased accessibility, improved SEO … benefits that outweigh the absurdity (and annoyance) of the pace and “self-righteousness” of the standards groups and standardistas (though, I feel like one in my heart).

    I personally won’t be forgoing web standards. I will still embrace them and talk about them and encourage other folks to educate themselves about standards. But I will (and always have) tried to balance that “idealism” with reality.

    Like you, I won’t be concerning myself with specifications until they are embraced by the browsers themselves (in fact, I never have). It is about the real world and what works for our clients and users. But my “real world” will also embrace web standards.

    I think Molly H. said, “standards are a goal.”

  28. 028 // andrew // 09.12.2008 // 7:07 AM

    Amen. ‘nough said.

  29. 029 // Giuliani Vito Ivan // 09.12.2008 // 7:09 AM

    In 2022 I’ll be probably writing HTML6, whose final spec will be out before than HTML5 at this pace…

  30. 030 // Nate Klaiber // 09.12.2008 // 7:12 AM

    I don’t think I’ve worked on a project in the last year where the client cared (or really knew) about standards. The client just wants something that works for their users.

    We all know clients don’t care about how their website is built, that is why we, as professional, know and understand how to build it properly.

    While I haven’t read the spec - and only seen the rants about the date - does HTML define web standards? Does it define it so much that this disheartening news causes people to throw web standards down the drain? To me, web standards is still about accessibility for all.

    I am building websites for clients, right now - and I just don’t know that I share the same sentiments to ditch web standards as a whole. It was never solely about ‘technology’ to me.

    It’s strange to me, because now I see the people that initially preached about finding the beauty in the constraints of the web, preached about the use of quality markup and semantics, preached about proper separation of content, presentation, and behavior, preached about educating our clients - turning their hats and preaching nearly the polar opposite. All because of this absurd date.

    I need to read more to make an educated argument, but I still don’t see web standards as tied directly to HTML5. Even as the web evolves, I still see standards about accessibility.

    Thoughts?

  31. 031 // Scott Nelle // 09.12.2008 // 7:22 AM

    I think someone has played a cruel joke on you, Jeff. It can’t possibly take another 14 years (almost the entire length of the web’s existence to date) to get the next version of HTML shored up to the point where it can be considered a recommendation.

    What’s that you say? That’s exactly what’s happening? Well then…

  32. 032 // Mark Perkins // 09.12.2008 // 7:25 AM

    Jeff, I (mostly) agree with you.

    But you can only take this standpoint because you have a good knowledge of standards to begin with.

    I think it is greatly beneficial for those just learning web design/development to have ‘web standards’ hammered into them unconditionally at the start of their career - with no compromise. Once they are deeply grounded in this knowledge, I think there is absolutely no harm (and in fact it may well be a good thing) to step back from the edge and not kill themselves over validation, non-standard attributes etc.

    Those new to the industry need to be encouraged to really, deeply understand the way the standards work and what they represent first, so they can make the decisions that you have from a position of knowledge, not ignorance.

    As I said I agree with you on much of what you say. I just worry about how posts like this may affect the mindset of people new to the game who need more clear-cut guidance rather than less, at least until they have a better feel for it themselves.

  33. 033 // Jeff Croft // 09.12.2008 // 7:25 AM

    Jeremy: I only have a minute to respond from my iPhone, so this will be short. Yes, this is a misunderstanding. The misunderstanding is that you think I’m “upset” about Hixie’s proposed timetable. I am in no way upset. I’m amused. I think it’s funny. As I said in the post, I couldn’t care less what the timetable says. I’m not sure how I could have been more clear. I get upset at the way you act towards me online, and upset at the way it doesn’t jive with your in-person personality, but certainly not upset about this timetable.

    I made a few jokes about it on Twitter, and you came after me, saying I hadn’t done my research. Sorry, bit I don’t feel like research is necessary for poking some self-deprecating fun at our community. You said you were just trying to clear up the FUD, but if that was true, you would have set the record straight about the timetable instead of pointing out my lack of research.

    Lighten up. Take a joke. This is funny. Laugh, already.

  34. 034 // liorean // 09.12.2008 // 7:30 AM

    Well, a finish date in 2022 would be ridiculous, if not for the fact the estimated “this is finished” date is Candidate Recommendation in 2012 according to that time table. He’s given an entire decade to writing and getting at least two full implementations through a more rigorous spec interoperability testsuite than we have ever seen in any standard related to the web.

    In other words: 2022 is not the dats set when browsers are to begin implementing HTML5 - no, 2022 is the estimated date when several browsers have proven that they have implemented EVERYTHING in HTML5 to the letter and correctly, without bugs.

  35. 035 // liorean // 09.12.2008 // 7:40 AM

    Sorry for the duped comment - I’ve gotten a proxy error (and there’s no proxy on my side) every single time I’ve tried submitting it, so I didn’t think it had gotten through.

  36. 036 // Jeremy Keith // 09.12.2008 // 7:44 AM

    Jeff, I apologise. From your initial messages on Twitter, I thought that you honestly believed that HTML5 wouldn’t be completed until 2022. When I recommended that you research more thoroughly (reading the rest of the article, for example), I thought you didn’t realise that the significant dates for HTML5 from our perspective will be October 2009 and 2012.

    I wrote that quick twitter message only out of concern for factual accuracy. It was not intended as a personal attack on you. Sorry if it came across that way. It is possible that you are predisposed to read communications from me in a negative (rather than neutral or positive) light. I’ll take that into account and adjust any future communication accordingly. I realise now that a simple emoticon would have gone a long way.

    Well, better late than never…

    :-)

  37. 037 // David Zhou // 09.12.2008 // 8:26 AM

    I thought you didn’t realise that the significant dates for HTML5 from our perspective will be October 2009 and 2012.

    He didn’t. Or if he did, the understanding got lost in the attempt at aburdist humor.

    It’s a 13 year timetable, yes. But it’s not a 13 year time table whereupon at the end, developers can finally begin to use it. Developers can start using HTML5 long before that.

    While Jeff may have understood that, towards the end of his post, in the reveling of the absurd, that distinction was somewhat forgotten. Or if not forgotten, glossed over in the name of comedic impact.

    But, it is pretty funny :) The mere fact that 2022 was even mentioned in a timetable about web technologies, regardless of what 2022 actually signifies, is absolutely hilarious.

  38. 038 // Jeff Croft // 09.12.2008 // 8:29 AM

    Jeremy: Apology absolutely accepted. I do think I’m predisposed to presume any communication from you is a personal attack, and likewise, I think you are predisposed to think that anything I write on the web must be some kind of angry rant. The part that bothers me about that is that you know me. You’ve hung out with me. You know I’m a fun-loving guy that always has a smile on my face and is always having a laugh. I’m almost never upset about anything. Only about 10% of the bullshit that comes out of my mouth is serious. I thought you would have known that by now, but apparently I, too, need to throw more emoticons into the mix.

    :)

  39. 039 // Billee D. // 09.12.2008 // 8:30 AM

    Man, Jeff. You make a joke, which I thought was hilarious, and suddenly you start a fire. C’mon people, lighten up. If we cannot laugh at ourselves (and God knows we are worthy of jest) then we shouldn’t be laughing at all.

    I think that this discussion raises some concerns about the mindset of our industry. And yes; it is ironically funny that anyone who really understands the Web could imagine such a ridiculous timetable being an implementation date. You have to admit that it’s funny.

    It was like spraying cats with a garden hose. And it has opened up a discussion that was beginning to stagnate; we need standards, but not standards for a future date. We need them now lest they become useless and irrelevant. My 2px.

  40. 040 // Keith // 09.12.2008 // 8:38 AM

    You’re just now getting sick of Web Standards? ‘bout time man.

    http://www.dkeithrobinson.com/en…

    :)

    But, anyway, these kind of debates always seem pretty pointless to me. I’ve been saying for years that Web Standards are important; and that standard tools like XHTML, CSS, etc. are a must for any web designer’s tool box. But in the end, they’re only tools. There are, IMHO, so many much more important things we could be talking about in our field and frankly it shows a lack of maturity (in our industry) that we’re always brought down into silly debates about tools/techniques that we can’t leverage in the real world where it matters.

    I do get that this kind of thing is interesting to some, and, hey, that’s cool. It shows deep passion for the work. And we do need people to push the tools/tech forward. But I find it deeply troubling at times that SO MANY PEOPLE spend SO MUCH time with this stuff when, again, I see many other topics that should be much more relevant to the growth of our industry and the welfare of our clients.

    I see a post about HTML5 with 100+ comments and then posts about content, or usability or strategy or what have you with 2. I really think we need more people letting go of the tool/technique debate and taking up a bit. Like Dan Rubin said, who knows what the web will be like in 2012?

    (Easy for me to say, I know, I hardly ever code anymore.)

    Anyway,as my employee, I’m glad Jeff is seeing the big picture. I’m also happy to see that he’s got the passion, even though he exhibits it in strange ways. LOL. And, let’s be honest, Jeff clearly does care about this stuff and he’s frustrated at the snail’s pace at which he can roll out great things in a “Web Standards” way. I think that’s understandable and rightly frustrating.

  41. 041 // Jeff Croft // 09.12.2008 // 8:41 AM

    Back to the topic at hand…

    @Emily: I am in no way suggesting anyone should abandon best practices. On the contrary: my point is that we all are so firmly entrenched in these best practices by now that we shouldn’t be afraid to step out of the box and try something new once in a while. We shouldn’t be afraid to play with the “new shiny” that’s available in browser, just because it’s not part of a “standard”, or it’s part of a standard that isn’t yet fully supported across the board. That’s all.

    But you can only take this standpoint because you have a good knowledge of standards to begin with.

    Absolutely! And, I can talk about it here, because the readers of this block have a good solid web standards understanding, as well. Obviously, if I were speaking to a bunch of people who were new to web development, I’d be pushing them to learn the standards way and the related best practices.

    It’s like Charlie Parker said (paraphrasing): “You spend all that time in the practice rooms learning your scales and chords so you can, eventually, forget all that shit and just play.”

    I just worry about how posts like this may affect the mindset of people new to the game who need more clear-cut guidance rather than less, at least until they have a better feel for it themselves.

    Okay, but I don’t consider it my responsibility to be always be teaching those people. This is my personal blog, and 90 percent or more of its audience is advanced web developers. Being my personal blog, I use it to write about whatever strikes my fancy. Being as I’m a fairly advanced web developer, it rarely strikes my fancy to write about beginner-level stuff. That’s just the way it is.

    2022 is the estimated date when several browsers have proven that they have implemented EVERYTHING in HTML5 to the letter and correctly, without bugs.

    Right. And that doesn’t strike you as flatly absurd? I mean, seriously — does anyone here even expect our current notion of a website to still exist in 2022? Think about it. Five years ago we had no concept of the websites of today (think about complex web apps like MobileMe, for example). What makes anyone think we can accurately predict what websites will look like in four years (when the “Candidate Recommendation” is supposed to be available), let alone in 2022?

    Or if not forgotten, glossed over in the name of comedic impact.

    90% of what I say and do is in the name of comedic impact. This was no different. :)

    But, it is pretty funny :) The mere fact that 2022 was even mentioned in a timetable about web technologies, regardless of what 2022 actually signifies, is absolutely hilarious.

    EXACTLY. That was my point all along. I’m glad you were able to see it through the forest. :)

  42. 042 // Michael Sigler // 09.12.2008 // 9:20 AM

    I completely understand your frustration and am glad someone else finds even the mention of such a date as completely absurd. There are some very competent people working on these standards but like many things designed by a committee, the process can get broken.

    To their credit it’s not always clear what the distinction between “collaboration with colleagues” and “design by committee” actually is.

    I’ll let them do what they’re good at. In the mean time I’ll ignore it until something meaningful we can use is in our grubby mitts. Until then I’ll focus on designing solutions for my clients and employers.

    Maybe in 2022 we can all come back here and have a good laugh. :)

  43. 043 // Matt Wilcox // 09.12.2008 // 9:31 AM

    For me the only real take-home thing about the whole 2022 thing is that if that’s the kind of thinking going on at the W3C they are so out of touch with reality as to be irrelevant.

    And Hixies comments about “so called” experts puts my back up. As do Bert Boss’s thoughts about CSS. These are not the attitudes with which to lead a specification. Period.

  44. 044 // Jeff Croft // 09.12.2008 // 9:48 AM

    For me the only real take-home thing about the whole 2022 thing is that if that’s the kind of thinking going on at the W3C they are so out of touch with reality as to be irrelevant.

    Right. While I do think Hixie and many of the others are smart, capable people, the standards bodies in general display a certain out-of-touchness that is pretty off-putting. Certainly even the mention of a date like 2022 shows a complete lack of awareness that developers everywhere are concerned about the beauracracy, red-tape, and snail’s pace we see when it comes to the W3C.

    And Hixies comments about “so called” experts puts my back up. As do Bert Boss’s thoughts about CSS. These are not the attitudes with which to lead a specification. Period.

    Agreed. Certainly there are problems with the way things are being run. but, I do believe Hixie, Bert, and everyone else involved have the best of intentions. I think they’re trying to do the right thing, but they’re in a tough position. Trying to balance the needs of users, developers, and browser manufactures has got to be difficult. I often feel like the developers aren’t very well-represented in these working groups. But, I’m completely unwilling to serve on any of them, myself, so I probably have no room to complain. :)

  45. 045 // Adam Gomaa // 09.12.2008 // 10:03 AM

    I’m sorry Jeff, you know better than this. Consider that the final working draft is supposed to be in about a year - October 2009. That’s not a ridiculous timespan, and at that point, HTML5’s features will be written down, codified, and essentially unchangeable. You could say it’ll reach a ‘spec freeze’ at that point.

    The remaining time is entirely, and only, about test suites and browser implementations, and seeing if those reveal inconsistencies in the spec. And in addition to Ian’s timeline being completely speculative, it’s largely irrelevant: they’re basically planned-out ACID tests. Would you also make the contention that CSS was useless until 2008 because that’s when ACID3 came out? It was, after all, 10 years after the spec (CSS2, at least) was finished. But to claim that the spec was irrelevant during that time is (purposely, I think) missing the point.

    You know better than to seize upon the furthest-future date and pretend that no one will be able to touch HTML5 until that date. That interpretation is absurd, not to mention incorrect. You can start with using header and article tags today, and browsers can start implementing them - no one is waiting. You’re the only one who sees a problem.

    There is always a balance between getting-it-done and doing-it-right. Handling that balance is the job of us web developers. Your mistake is to treat this as a conflict - implementations vs. standards - instead of as a balance - implementations and standards.

    If you look at it that way, standards make sense: They provide the goalposts for implementations to aim for, while the users of those implementations - in this case, the users are web developers - aim for the implementations. There is no problem with using the specs to see what the browser is trying to accomplish.

    Yes, the specs are only authoritative for implementations. For users of the implementations, the implementations themselves are authoritative - that’s why we test web pages in browsers, not validators. But the standards are still extremely useful references for developers - and yes, this makes them relevant! - even if the browser implementations are the end-all, say-all of “does this work.”

  46. 046 // Jeff Croft // 09.12.2008 // 10:10 AM

    Would you also make the contention that CSS was useless until 2008 because that’s when ACID3 came out?

    I certainly would not, just like I never made the connection that HTML 5 was “useless.” What in God’s name made you think I find HTML 5 useless?

    You know better than to seize upon the furthest-future date and pretend that no one will be able to touch HTML5 until that date.

    When did I “pretend that no one will be able to touch HTML5 until that date?” I think you’re reading stuff between the lines that wasn’t there, my friend.

    Your mistake is to treat this as a conflict…

    Again, when did I treat any of this as a conflict?

    If you look at it that way, standards make sense: They provide the goalposts for implementations to aim for, while the users of those implementations - in this case, the users are web developers - aim for the implementations. There is no problem with using the specs to see what the browser is trying to accomplish.

    I absolutely agree, and I think this pretty much echos what I said in the post. I’m not really sure why you are acting like we’re so far apart on this issue.

    I apologize, Adam, but I found your comment to be very strange. You are suggesting, like Jeremy was, that I am somehow “upset” or “concerned” about the 2022 date. To make that suggestion, I can only imagine that you didn’t read the post very well, and certainly didn’t read the comments associated with it.

  47. 047 // Jeff Croft // 09.12.2008 // 10:13 AM

    Also, I must say: I’m quite disappointed about the lack of comments on the song I’ve included. I put it in specifically to add more light-heartedness to the mood and ensure everyone knew I was laughing at all this. :)

  48. 048 // Tom // 09.12.2008 // 10:16 AM

    They must have awesome snacks at the HTML5 meetings.

    We need standards but 2022 is just silly.

    More reason for the browsers boys and girls to keep doing their great work and producing browsers that work (IE6 I’m looking at you).

  49. 049 // Jared Christensen // 09.12.2008 // 10:22 AM

    Group hug, y’all.

  50. 050 // Andrew Ingram // 09.12.2008 // 10:28 AM

    The problem with the timeline is that I feel sorry for the people who will still be working on HTML5 specs and test frameworks when the rest of the web is debating what should go into HTML8 following the popular changes that came with HTML7 and the reckless decisions of HTML6.

  51. 051 // Simon Willison // 09.12.2008 // 11:38 AM

    Jeff: you may be joking, but it’s pretty clear from your comments that a lot of other people are genuinely confused and don’t understand the distinction between the 2012 and 2022 dates at all.

  52. 052 // Stephen // 09.12.2008 // 11:43 AM

    The only standard that matters is the standard your UA adheres too (this is especially true in the world of mobile devices), which makes most current W3C standards interesting side notes but not terribly important in day to day web design. That said, HTML5 is important because it’s probably the first standard that actually stands a chance of having something in common with UAs, the testing suite and definition of error handling should see to that, both of which will likely be in active use long before 2022.

  53. 053 // David Zhou // 09.12.2008 // 11:44 AM

    Jeff: you may be joking, but it’s pretty clear from your comments that a lot of other people are genuinely confused and don’t understand the distinction between the 2012 and 2022 dates at all.

    Not only that, while I can understand http://ishtml5readyyet.com/ being used for comedic purposes, it also encourages an entirely wrong idea about the dates in question. HTML5 will be “ready” before 2022.

  54. 054 // Joe Lewis // 09.12.2008 // 11:54 AM

    Well I thought it was a hilarious post… ;-)

    BTW - love the Coltrane quote. In fact, there is a huge amount of correlation here between web standards and the music world. Throughout music history there has always been a debate between the classical mainstream stylists and those that would venture out, break the rules, and innovate. Beethoven was a prime example of this - someone who tugged at the seams of accepted practice and found new directions. He was a master of counterpoint, harmony, classical form, and orchestration, and he set trends that to this day have profound impact.

  55. 055 // Eric Eggert // 09.12.2008 // 12:27 PM

    I see where you’re coming from, Jeff but I I don’t think the timetable is as absurd as you think it is.

    What do you expect from the W3C to do? Predict the future? Yes, probably by 2022 we will fly to mars and use holographic 3D interfaces with touch or even mind control. I don’t know what will happen, you don’t and the W3C does at last.

    W3C is not the place for break-trough inventions or new technologies. It can’t do that. HTML5 has the application driven web in mind but doesn’t let the ordinary documents behind, which is a good thing.

    I think the usage of the web will not change significantly until 2022, at least there are no signals at the moment. Display size and quality will vary more, location based apps and services will be more important in the future. Those need an underlying web standard as well which will most likely be HTML5.

    What we will see is a paradigm change in using CSS and JavaScript. As those technologies will be more and more tailored to satisfy the special needs of various User Agents.

    For the sake of the standards process we should mere talk about 2009 where most of HTML5 will have beta implementations and 2012 when the work on the spec has finished. Talking about 2022 scares people away, which is never any good.

    (And no offense here, I just wanted to write my thoughts down :)

  56. 056 // Jeff Croft // 09.12.2008 // 12:29 PM

    Jeff: you may be joking, but it’s pretty clear from your comments that a lot of other people are genuinely confused and don’t understand the distinction between the 2012 and 2022 dates at all.

    I think you’re right — so it’s absolutely appropriate to sort it out. I’m just not sure this is the place to do it. I would suggest the W3 or WHATWG ought to be issuing some kind of statement, if they’ve inadvertently confused people.

    Not only that, while I can understand http://ishtml5readyyet.com/ being used for comedic purposes, it also encourages an entirely wrong idea about the dates in question. HTML5 will be “ready” before 2022

    I think the suggestion we can’t have a little fun with this because it might confuse someone is silly. I didn’t set out to confuse anyone, and I doubt J did either, when he made that site. If people got confused, I apologize (and I’m sure J would, too). But really — is it somehow our responsibility to inform the world about HTML 5?

    People need to relax a bit. We’re all friends here. We’re all in this together. If we can’t poke fun at ourselves, then why should we even bother?

  57. 057 // Jeff Croft // 09.12.2008 // 12:58 PM

    Eric, I appreciate your thoughts. I have to say, though, that if you’re right, I’m going to be very, very disappointed. If, in 2022, I’m still writing HTML, CSS, and Javascript, I will probably shoot myself. :)

  58. 058 // Brad Fults // 09.12.2008 // 1:50 PM

    I think the suggestion we can’t have a little fun with this because it might confuse someone is silly.

    I think of it as akin to yelling “FIRE!” in a crowded theater. When you’re a fire marshal.

    Poking fun is fine, but ranting about something that is very misleading to a lot of developers who depend on your authority in such matters is irresponsible.

    I’d rather you point about the absurdity of the W3C Process and the uselessness of the 2022 date specifically, without looking like you’re ignoring the hard work that spec authors and browser implementors are putting into HTML5 today.

    The fact is that you can use several parts of the spec today, for your real clients with real needs, so ignoring the whole process is unreasonable.

  59. 059 // Matt // 09.12.2008 // 1:56 PM

    I can see the activity log on the whatevers coolest social experiment app. ‘Jeff & Jeremy are now holding hands’. Who’d guess that a little sawn off message on Twatter can make grown men wear xxl Y fronts on their heads for everyone to see. Love those tentative emoticons, I think I could cry.

    Thank you Jeff & Jeremy for letting me laugh both with you, and at you.

    Its a bit like HTML5, timeless comedy.

  60. 060 // Jesse Gardner // 09.12.2008 // 7:23 PM

    Aren’t web standards about idealism after all?

  61. 061 // Rob // 09.12.2008 // 7:54 PM

    I feel like fucking right now, too.

  62. 062 // Matthijs // 09.13.2008 // 1:48 AM

    It is funny. But it also begs the question: why does writing a spec take so long? Can someone answer that?

    I mean, serious. To put it in perspective: even building a nuclear power plant - an enormous job - takes less time.

  63. 063 // Ryan McGrath // 09.13.2008 // 2:06 AM

    I laughed. I also considered saying something akin to “there’s always XHTML2”, but it’s 5AM and I’d like to sleep.

    At any rate, I just wanted to leave a quick comment…

    The whole concept of web standards, which I once strongly advocated for, has now become so incredibly ridiculous as to be not even worth the time and attention of serious web designers and developers. … … We’ve all learned a lot through this standards movement. We are now capable of identifying a good idea when we see it (like the namespacing of experimental CSS properties, for example). We are equally capable of knowing when something feels inelegant (like maintaining different code bases to achieve the same thing in multiple browsers). Our bullshit radar is strong these days.

    I guess my one comment about that statement would be that yeah, if you’re aware of the whole “standards movement”, your bullshit radar is strong, but the flipside of that is so obvious.

    HTML/CSS/JS is such a scattered environment to work in, there’s no way anyone attempting to learn this stuff could develop a bullshit radar without the help of a “standards movement”.

    I feel the same way about a 2022 date; that’s just so fucking stupid that I instantly dismissed it in my mind, I’d rather work with what is actually available and useful. But to not advocate standards in some sense seems to be like taking an axe to everything that the “standards movement” has created.

    Anyway, just my two cents. I’ma follow you on Twitter; not sure why I wasn’t already…

  64. 064 // Bill de hÓra // 09.13.2008 // 4:50 AM

    Certainly even the mention of a date like 2022 shows a complete lack of awareness that developers everywhere are concerned about the beauracracy, red-tape, and snail’s pace we see when it comes to the W3C. ”

    I read it as black humor. Why can’t you?

    I think associating Hickson with W3C process shows poor form; imo he’s a catalyst for some of the browser fallout that makes your job easier - right now.

  65. 065 // J Cornelius // 09.13.2008 // 8:30 AM

    Not only that, while I can understand http://ishtml5readyyet.com/ being used for comedic purposes, it also encourages an entirely wrong idea about the dates in question. HTML5 will be “ready” before 2022

    It is entirely comedic… then again so is the idea that a standard takes 13 years to correctly implement. I made the site on impulse, literally in 15 minutes. This has created an interesting discussion though. My thoughts are here.

    Bottom line: as many others have said before me, there is something tragically wrong with the standards process and someone, somewhere, will fix it - eventually. Hopefully before 2022.

  66. 066 // Jeff Croft // 09.13.2008 // 9:55 AM

    I read it as black humor. Why can’t you?

    Good point. Maybe it was? I didn’t read it that way, and I don’t think most others did, either. But if it was dark humor, it was quite funny. :)

    But you’re the first person in 60+ comments to suggest maybe Ian was joking. So, clearly, most people didn’t read it that way. I’d suggest that if he was joking, he needs to come out and say so, to set the record straight.

    I think associating Hickson with W3C process shows poor form; imo he’s a catalyst for some of the browser fallout that makes your job easier - right now.

    I totally agree with that. I have no problem with Hixie, and I definitely didn’t intend to sound as though I did.

  67. 067 // Kyle // 09.13.2008 // 7:18 PM

    Whatever. I’ll be 38 years old in 2022 and enjoying my retirement.

  68. 068 // Jordan // 09.13.2008 // 11:01 PM

    I think that looking at a date for the whole spec is pretty useless, since what you want in not the spec (which I would guess has a majority dealing with defining behaviour of already implemented stuff rather than new features). By that the spec is already a huge success since the trick is getting all the browsers to implement something - what other W3C spec do you see that has that? Firefox 3, Opera 9.5, Safari 4, and IE8 (yes, even IE!) all implement postMessage and it is being used today on Facebook for their Chat bar at the bottom. That’s right today, not 2022.

    On a separate note, I like the new Mozilla Web-tech blog (http://developer.mozilla.org/web…) over the one you linked too.

  69. 069 // Bohdan Ganicky // 09.14.2008 // 2:12 AM

    And I thought I’ll see Aurora myself but right now it seems I’ll hardly catch HTML5. :)

  70. 070 // Aaron Moodie // 09.14.2008 // 3:02 PM

    And if you get your panties in a knot because I am making light of the situation, then you and I just wouldn’t get along

    Awesome.

  71. 071 // Jason Robb // 09.14.2008 // 3:26 PM

    If they want to look forward and try to imagine what we might be doing in 2022, that’s awesome. In the meantime, I’ve got real work to do.

    Here here. Well said, Jeff!

  72. 072 // Shane // 09.14.2008 // 8:55 PM

    Well said, and it is hilarious for anyone to be thinking THAT far in the future. Just like you said, who REALLY knows what will be happening online in 2022. I mean if that was the case then shouldn’t I have my flying car by now, or shoes that tied themselves or a jacket that would self adjust to fit me and also have a built in heater/air conditioner?

    Nice touch with the song by the way!

    Also I am really digging your song player, I was really impressed by it.

  73. 073 // Jeff Croft // 09.14.2008 // 11:23 PM

    Also I am really digging your song player, I was really impressed by it.

    Thanks! I can’t take credit for it, though. Nathan Borror made it and was kind enough to loan it to me. :)

  74. 074 // Ian Hickson // 09.15.2008 // 2:10 AM

    Jeff: If you hadn’t stopped reading, you’d have found that I basically said exactly what you said (with slightly less profanity), including giving a number of dates for more important milestones than the completion of the entire project.

    Laughing at realistic timetables is fine… but personally I find the W3C version of the timetable (which says we’ll have two complete bug-free implementations of the whole of HTML5 by 2010) to be far, far funnier.

  75. 075 // Berta Berlin // 09.15.2008 // 5:49 AM

    To me it seems like Ian was just trying to point out what a complicated process we have here and today. No one can seriously speak about any state of any piece of technology 15 years from now (in Internet business). If we’re unlucky we will sit in caves again - drawing cows on stones and eating what we hunt :-)

  76. 076 // Jeff Croft // 09.15.2008 // 6:28 AM

    Jeff: If you hadn’t stopped reading, you’d have found that I basically said exactly what you said (with slightly less profanity), including giving a number of dates for more important milestones than the completion of the entire project.

    Yep, I went back and read it after the fact and did see that you and I are basically on the same page about this. Awesome.

    Laughing at realistic timetables is fine… but personally I find the W3C version of the timetable (which says we’ll have two complete bug-free implementations of the whole of HTML5 by 2010) to be far, far funnier

    Damn good point. :)

    Thanks for stopping by, Ian. Please do know that this was all in jest and none of it was intended to be an attack on you, WTHATWG, or anyone else. :)

  77. 077 // Dave // 09.15.2008 // 8:03 AM

    Funny coincidence, I identified 2022 as when the marketshare of IE 6 will be low enough that I don’t have to support it any more.

    And if you laughed at that, know that that’s a perfect example of why it’s important to think about what HTML will be in 14 years. The decisions made today will be our ball-and-chain 14 years from now, just like the decisions made by the IE team prior to the 2001 release of IE6 will cause problems for web developers well into 2009 and possibly beyond.

  78. 078 // Grand Caveman // 09.15.2008 // 8:59 AM

    I really enjoyed reading this post. In 2022 I’ll be 34, and hopefully the internet will be obsolete by then. Or the world will have imploded, so it doesn’t really matter.

  79. 079 // Shane // 09.15.2008 // 10:41 AM

    Your link to “Nathan Borror” is a bit messed up, but I was able to figure it out.

    Thanks!

  80. 080 // Mike Schinkel // 09.15.2008 // 4:29 PM

    Your post pretty much sums up my sentiment exactly. That’s why I gave up on the HTML5 working group over a year ago; too many pedantic standardistas focused on creating their own personal nirvana vs. focusing on implementing a pragmatic standard.

  81. 081 // Caro // 09.16.2008 // 7:56 AM

    Nice article :) Thanks for this - it was very interesting :)

  82. 082 // Mr. Darcy Murphy // 09.24.2008 // 1:17 PM

    So… HTML 5 won’t be ready until both my kids have grown up, started AND finished school and moved out for college.

    LMAO. Sad, really.

    Thanks for venting. You took the words out of my mouth.

  83. 083 // Bert // 09.30.2008 // 1:48 PM

    Yes, I am laughing. And crying. This is indeed too ridiculous for words. Mind you, I had my doubts when I heard browser manufacturers where picking up the standard where the W3C left it. In the old days we said oh, look we can’t code completely according to web standard because there is this browser war you see? The we celebrated the end of the war, and the warlords got around at the table and said. Look, we all want to have our way, let us fight it over the heads of the users. We pretend we are no longer at war and implement whatever we want, say it is a HTML5 proposal and then let free speech in forums do the work for us. That way we all get what we want…in the end. But who cares by then the web will be different anyway but we will go down in web-history. Enjoying our financially rather handsomely rewarded old age because of all the “good” things we did for the development of progress. Please, why don’t we all put our heads together, define a standard within a year. Build a browser that is 100% compliant with it and conquer the web? (I am serious; I am sure there are enough experts out there so we could do it!)

  84. 084 // Adam // 10.02.2008 // 10:04 AM

    Who fucking cares? I’m building websites for clients and users”

    YOU SHOULD FUCKING CARE, THAT YOUR MAKING A QUALITY WEBSITE THAT ABIDES BY THE ONLY STANDARDS IN OUR INDUSTRY!

    Its just because your fucking incapable of designing and coding a website CORRECTLY.

    You should be caring that your clients will have a website that can be viewed correctly in any browser clients will be visiting the website on, YOUR THE SORT OF PRICK who would NOT have a wheelchair ramp into his designer clothes shop.

    Pigs like you disgust me, to think there are people getting paid to make SHIT is frankly a joke, you are are a joke.

    Go back to Noahs fucking Arc and let us move forward whilst you cry in your corner head butting the wall muttering “I dont know”

    Seriously, its shit like this that makes the web a worse place, the NEXT thing you will be suggesting is for everyone to full their websites with Adwords shite.

    Seriously grow up and start being a professional.a

  85. 085 // Reinmar Müller // 10.02.2008 // 1:35 PM

    Love the song! It embellished the experience of reading the words like a well-chosen background song in a movie. And yes, the role of the year 2022 in this whole issue is effing funny. No need to complicate things.

    @ADAM:

    Not sure if your comment will still be online by the time you read this (if you do), but if that’s really you then you’re not only being an a-hole, but something else too. If it’s not you, I apologise in advance and suggest you go through your list of enemies to see who might have a reason to frame you ;)

    Perhaps I misunderstood, but my impression is that Mr. Croft’s frustration is with the often slow, pedantic, unrealistic aspects of the “standards” world, especially the processes that are supposed to solidify and advance the their use in the real world. He never implied that building sloppy, non-interoperable sites is OK.

    Seriously grow up and start being a professional.

    Do you think your clients would (still) consider you to be “professional” and grown-up after reading the gush of mental diarrhoea that you call “comment”? It doesn’t make sense one bit, it’s rude as hell and presumptuous. Before you accuse people of being “incapable of designing and coding a website CORRECTLY” (who else cracked up there?) you should work on the basics of grammar and spelling, skills that might come in handy one day. I’m not a native English-speaker but it wasn’t too hard to learn the difference between “you’re” and the possessive pronoun “your”.

    @Brad:

    Poking fun is fine, but ranting about something that is very misleading to a lot of developers who depend on your authority in such matters is irresponsible.

    Since when is Jeff responsible for the ability of other developers to use their own judgement? In what way do any developers “depend on” Jeff’s authority, unless they are employed by him? People with a sheep herd mentality shouldn’t be in this business.

  86. 086 // Adam // 10.02.2008 // 4:03 PM

    No its me ok, Someone linked this on twitter; I cant belive this guys such an asshole; its taken so long for heads to turn and people start looking at web standards, all you need to do is people push it more; fuck sake we’re the only industry who does not have to adhere to any regulation, that’s why there is so many bloody cow boys and shitters in this industry; people who think Frontpage websites make them “Web Designers” and this Crap from this nunty is just going make it worse; he’s in the said retarded band wagon as Carsonified who didnt even bloody know you needed to have company reg number and office etc in email sigs; blatantly breaking the law and blatantly not HTML Valid; what next?

    Screw if i was abusive and hurtful I don’t care; his stupid dribble has annoyed the hell out of me; he should wipe his chin and sort himself out.

  87. 087 // Reinmar Müller // 10.02.2008 // 6:30 PM

    @Adam: Wow.

    You and your ilk do more damage to the credibility and adoption of standards by the “many bloody cow boys and shitters in this industry” than you can imagine. Irony of ironies. Your righteous anger is pathetic, your logic nonexistent. So, okay, go on missing the point of web standards by wielding valid HTML as your sole weapon. But then by your own logic you should shut the f up (which I’ll do too now; sorry, Jeff) and “fix” these sites in your portfolio.

    And then read why I shouldn’t have pointed that out, even though you deserve to be ridiculed by swallowing your own medicine.

  88. 088 // Adam // 10.03.2008 // 4:51 AM

    @Reinmar; oh really? its not the only thing I believe in at all, I believe in making the web a better place, we are the only industry where we do not need to conform to regulations, what the fuck do you think would happen if you was to say to the food industry;

    No Hygiene Regulations just do whatever but we have some optional standards you should try to adhere to”

    What would you think about that? Would you like to eat that food? I know I wouldn’t, that would be like saying to sausage makers “You don’t actually have to put real meat in, just chuck all the offal in, but we recommend meat”

    Its stupid shit like Jeff Croft and YOU who try and spoil it for people with “STANDARDS” whoops; no double meaning intended there. xx

  89. 089 // Reinmar Müller // 10.03.2008 // 8:54 AM

    Adam, your unwarranted personal attacks — which are completely out of line — aside, the point is: I think it’s safe to assume that we (you, me, the owner of this blog and its readers) are all in the the same boat in having an interest in making the web a better place, as you describe it. The difference is that militant zealots like you tend to view this as a religious matter while most of us simply want things to work. There’s no do-gooder agenda, it’s just a practical matter. Also, as I’ve said before, the irony is that militant zealots like you actually alienate those table-layout-and-spacer-gif fans you’re so annoyed about. Browse through any “non-standards” oriented web design forum and you’ll see plenty of people saying they couldn’t give a shit about adopting a standards approach because they’re put off by the “standards-Nazis”.

    Web standards are an attempt to have a common basis for the various aspects of web technology that authors/developers/designers, browser manufacturers, and whoever else is involved in the industry can rely on. So we can all get actual work done instead of working around this and that, and trying figure out if X supports Y. That’s why there are standards bodies like the W3C — who are comprised of people from across the board and, being human, don’t automatically do everything right all the time either. They give out recommendations that everybody follow the same protocols and specifications. Yes, that’s a good thing and it doesn’t take a genius to see the advantages in that. But that’s all that Web Standards are.

    There’s a big difference between that and something like regulations for the food or medical/pharma industry or international standard procedures in air traffic control, where the public health or human lives literally depend on the adherence to standards/regulations. It’s not “merely” a technical or managerial advantage or a ROI benefit. So your sausage example is a bit off, don’t you think?

    Anyway, as you’re so involved in doing the Right Thing(tm), I suggest you buy this book that one of the stupid shits co-authored. At least, I found it very useful.

    Finally, don’t ever criticise anyone again about their lack of “valid” HTML unless you know what you’re talking bout. If you’re not capable of that, I guess you should really go fix those invalid sites in your portfolio (see the links you ignored in my previous comment) before your clients find out you’ve lied to them.

    O? ??nti ??nti ??nti.

  90. 090 // Robert Wetzlmayr // 10.09.2008 // 3:40 AM

    Done with webstandards you are, but what would browser vendors align their developemtn efforts to if it wasn’t for the proposed standards? Was it better back then when one vendor chose to impment the MARQUEE element, while the others took yet another branch?

  91. 091 // Jeff Croft // 10.12.2008 // 8:16 AM

    Robert-

    I wasn’t saying we don’t need standards, I was saying I personally was done reading the specs and following the progress on them day-to-day. Did you actually read the article? If you had, you would have seen this line:

    I’m not saying the specs should go away. They absolute serve a purpose. I’m just saying that I personally am done paying much attention to them.

    Sorry if that wasn’t clear.

  92. 092 // Rebecca // 10.15.2008 // 7:03 AM

    I know that this is not related to the MAIN subject, but Truckstop is one of my fave bands…nice integration here!

  93. 093 // suraj // 10.22.2008 // 12:12 PM

    I cant believe this…2022..i guess we should have html 10, 12 ,15 ready by the time or i may comeup with my own language to develope a wbsite…why so long…what are we doing with it…simply can’t figure out why it should take so long….i am 26 already & more 14 years to go to see HTML5.. i guess basic HTML is then more powerfull..it has all that it takes to develop a website.. if its 2022 then we should eleminate CSS..the techonlogy will be so advanced..that we will require either one of them as one..what do we need to prepone the launch…i simply cant figure out why..

  94. 094 // Pison // 10.22.2008 // 10:08 PM

    Hey Suraj I second you. You are right in a way…

  95. 095 // Werbung Russland // 11.09.2008 // 12:49 PM

    Very nice article.

  96. 096 // Armin Wagner // 11.21.2008 // 4:11 PM

    Quotes from the interview:

    We’re also fully intending to do something that none of the aforementioned specs really did, which is to have a comprehensive test suite that we will require at least two browsers to completely pass before we call it a day. […]

    If we find such problems in HTML5, we’ll change the specification — but to find such problems, we have to write big test suites and that’s going to take a long time. That’s what the last 10 years of the timetable are about.”

    It’s the classic waterfall model gone Escher:

    1. implement it

    2. write the spec

    3. test it (not the implementation, the spec!)

  97. 097 // Armin // 11.22.2008 // 8:14 AM

    html5 - the movie

  98. 098 // Chris Heilmann // 01.14.2009 // 3:50 PM

    Thank you for that, this was thoroughly enjoyable. I’ve blogged my thoughts about this as I thought it’d be too long for a comment here.

    My points: cut Jeff some slack, he knows the deal and wanted to share the fun he felt and standards are so much more than what we write down in specs - they are an agreement of how we should work together to make it easier for everyone involved.

  99. 099 // Mr Bender // 01.15.2009 // 7:51 PM

    I cannot possibly digest all of this ranting. This guy has certainly got me running circles around my dislodged humor meter. When will people understand, language, is less than 10% words, and mostly body language and tone of voice. It’s time to let go of the written humor. That way you don’t have to tell people you’re joking so much brohan!

  100. 100 // sehirler // 01.24.2009 // 5:42 AM

    Cool post . .This means that there is no way for other people Thank you

  101. 101 // Unternehmensberatung Russland // 02.02.2009 // 1:26 PM

    Nice to read your blog :)

  102. 102 // designer prom // 02.11.2009 // 5:43 AM

    I never find this story, Thanks for it, I can be alert from those kind of prom dresses.

  103. 103 // FinalContext // 02.18.2009 // 9:21 AM

    13 years? That’s almost as long at the entire Apollo Program took.

    W T F

  104. 104 // how to remove virus // 04.17.2009 // 2:07 PM

    wow, I might be dead by then. good info tho. thanks

  105. 105 // car games // 04.18.2009 // 5:03 AM

    That was very interesting with a friendly procedural approach. Thank you.

  106. 106 // Webhoster // 06.15.2009 // 3:35 PM

    yes, very interesting… I am happy

  107. 107 // Kosmetikstudio // 06.18.2009 // 1:57 AM

    yes, nice comments here…

  108. 108 // Kosmetik Ulm // 06.18.2009 // 2:01 AM

    I think also, it’s very nice this blog.. best wishes

  109. 109 // Webhoster // 06.29.2009 // 4:56 AM

    I cant believe this…2022..i guess we should have html 10, 12 ,15 ready by the time or i may comeup with my own language to develope a wbsite…why so long…what are we doing with it…simply can’t figure out why it should take so long….i am 26 already & more 14 years to go to see HTML5.. i guess basic HTML is then more powerfull..it has all that it takes to develop a website.. if its 2022 then we should eleminate CSS..the techonlogy will be so advanced..that we will require either one of them as one..what do we need to prepone the launch…i simply cant figure out why..

  110. 110 // Webhosting // 06.29.2009 // 4:58 AM

    Done with webstandards you are, but what would browser vendors align their developemtn efforts to if it wasn’t for the proposed standards? Was it better back then when one vendor chose to impment the MARQUEE element, while the others took yet another branch?

  111. 111 // BenThinkin // 07.06.2009 // 3:30 AM

    My clients are more interested in picking templates than quality code. I write to XHTML1.0 strict because it keeps my code clean and, hopefully, legible by the next HTML-writer who comes along. Frankly, I’m more hopeful that we can drop support for IE6 by 2012 than Firefox, Opera, Safari et al will coordinate on which elements do what.

  112. 112 // Gerry Quach // 07.07.2009 // 8:57 PM

    Wow it looks like a fair few commenters here completely misunderstood both Jeff and Hixie or just plain didn’t bother reading properly.

    /cue all the “pro web developers” who will start citing Jeff’s blog post to advocate using tables for layout ;)

    Practically speaking, I think many of HTML5’s new features will be ready for use within two or three years max. Of course, that doesn’t necessarily mean that the most popular browser (Internet Explorer) will have bug-free built-in support by then, but this is hardly a new problem. Progressive enhancement or graceful degradation will be the order of the day once again.

    We have never had it so good as web developers. With the advent of cutting edge Webkit and Firefox, Internet Explorer will hopefully be forced to lift its game.

  113. 113 // Christian // 07.14.2009 // 9:59 PM

    This is a great article with a great vision^^

  114. 114 // Chrissi // 07.25.2009 // 1:13 AM

    As an example of what Simon Willison said above, I have just readed on Planet Mozilla that they implemented HTML5 Drag and Drop. The idea mighty have come from them, by the way. What matters is that, when people from Mozilla/Opera/Webkit/Google have a idea for the web, they propose it for inclusion on HTML5, implement it, and other browsers can implement it under the “Its on HTML5” excuse - except if they dont agree, so it they can use the open forums to complain. Anyway, what matters is the forum, not the dates. The web is constantly evolving, so shiping a great spec that is unimplementable and will be irrelevent for 90% of the users just dont make sense. We have a Working Group to discuss the features we want in HTML, so browsers dont just implement a new feature that others have to catchup (XmlHttpRequest anyone?) - they propose it as a standard.

  115. 115 // Jonny Axelsson // 07.28.2009 // 3:24 AM

    I will make some predictions for you:

    The world in 2022 will be pretty much like the world in 2009.

    The world in 2009 is pretty much like 1996 which was pretty much like the world in 1983 which was pretty much like the world in 1970. Some changes are fairly sudden, others are slow, some are dramatic, others subtle, but as a whole “pretty much the same” covers it.

    However, supposedly we will enter the Dark Ages in 2024. That would probably be when HTML5 becomes a Rec.

    The Web in 2022 will not be dramatically different from the Web in 2009. It will be less hot and it will be less cool. The Web is a project, and as it succeeds it will fade out of our attention and into the background. We don’t care about things when they work.

    HTML5 is a project as well. In fact it is at least two projects. One is to provide new features people has been waiting for, the other is to make HTML5 implementations fully interoperable. The second is the most ambitious and time-consuming. When I heard “2022” I thought “that sounds just about right” though if I were to pick a number I would have said 2015. But I err on the optimistic side. 2003-ish I said CSS3 would likely be done by 2010, while the official story was 2004-2005 or some such.

    Assuming enough resources are put in it on both sides, it takes about two years to fix the bugs exposed in a test suite when the test suite and the implementation are on the same level. That should still mean something like 2014-2018, but if the QA people are able to make ever-increasingly evil tests 2022 is not far off.

  116. 116 // clark // 07.29.2009 // 12:24 AM

    by 2022 I hope ie can finally render html properly

  117. 117 // Lo'oris // 07.29.2009 // 9:43 AM

    Planning something such as HTML 5 in 13 years is retarded, true.

    No reason to throw away standards just because an idiot (however importand he might happen to be) said a stupid thing once.

    I care about NOW, and I’d like to have standards NOW.

  118. 118 // Jens Seiber // 08.16.2009 // 2:56 AM

    Done with webstandards you are, but what would browser vendors align their developemtn efforts to if it wasn’t for the proposed standards? Was it better back then when one vendor chose to impment the MARQUEE element, while the others took yet another branch?

  119. 119 // Sean Charles // 09.11.2009 // 8:30 AM

    I have taken the time read all of the above comments and 2022 is way off the mark for one simple reason that seems to have been overlooked.

    2012 => End Of The World

    So they are 10 years into the afterlife already, unless of course HTML is re-branded as Heavenly Text Moses Laughed.

    :)

  120. 120 // Custom Thesis // 09.23.2009 // 11:55 AM

    The web is constantly evolving, so shiping a great spec that is unimplementable and will be irrelevent for 90% of the users just dont make sense.

  121. 121 // Mike HDD // 10.05.2009 // 2:35 AM

    Wow it looks like a fair few commenters here completely misunderstood both Jeff and Hixie or just plain didn’t bother reading properly. - It seems so. I agree, some readers didnt understand the message.

  122. 122 // urlaub tirol // 11.13.2009 // 9:41 PM

    I think also, it’s very nice this blog.. best wishes from Wildschönau Tirol in Östereich.

  123. 123 // Teeth Whitening Products // 11.17.2009 // 2:55 AM

    Nice Blog! I think all the information shared in the post is pretty true.

  124. 124 // Seeking Women // 12.03.2009 // 2:54 PM

    Very colorful blog i like the articles too very dedicated writers thanx for the good job

  125. 125 // bull 100 // 12.04.2009 // 11 PM

    The whole concept of web standards, which I once strongly advocated for, has now become so incredibly ridiculous as to be not even worth the time and attention of serious web designers and developers.

  126. 126 // Lego City // 12.07.2009 // 12:32 PM

    Allways a plecure to read your thoughts!

  127. 127 // Temporary Tattoos // 12.20.2009 // 9:07 AM

    I don’t see how anyone can be predicting that far ahead when it comes to IT. We aren’t talking about going to the moon or building a mine. IT changes so quickly it is impossible to be planning that far ahead. The guy is dreaming

  128. 128 // cortney // 12.28.2009 // 8:17 AM

    I agree, it is hard to predict the future, especially that far ahead. But the ideas are there, and I see where hes coming from. It was a pretty thought provoking article. I like it.

  129. 129 // Newsman // 01.15.2010 // 4:48 AM

    I am in no way suggesting anyone should abandon best practices. On the contrary: my point is that we all are so firmly entrenched in these best practices by now that we shouldn’t be afraid to step out of the box and try something new once in a while. We shouldn’t be afraid to play with the “new shiny” that’s available in browser, just because it’s not part of a “standard”, or it’s part of a standard that isn’t yet fully supported across the board. That’s all.

  130. 130 // cheap florida vacations // 01.27.2010 // 9:29 AM

    Thanks..enjoyed the post.

  131. 131 // Car Wraps // 01.27.2010 // 9:31 AM

    As always lots of great and usefull info..thanks for the heads up!!

  132. 132 // dump trailers // 02.02.2010 // 8:43 PM

    I love the way technology is moving forward..cant wait to see wahts next.

  133. 133 // Offray Ribbon // 02.17.2010 // 1:57 PM

    I can completely understand why you wouldn’t want to spend the time to keep up on the latest standards. Like everything these days, things are changing way too fast. It used to be something only the last generation of folks were experiencing, but now I’m feeling it.

    We all have finite time each day, so we need to use it as efficiently as possible. Thus, until something becomes enough of an issue to pay attention, it’s better to focus on what’s most important…and frankly, staying up on web standards isn’t it.

  134. 134 // Hotel Ibiza // 02.19.2010 // 5:50 AM

    Surely he meant 2012

  135. 135 // french bulldog puppies // 03.03.2010 // 5:08 AM

    positively He meant 2012..

  136. 136 // Kara // 03.09.2010 // 5:55 AM

    Yeah, I tend to think that people don’t read stuff on the internet properly and make comments that aren’t well thought out.

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